Fw: [BLACK-LEFT] Gus Hall

red-rebel red-rebel at SPAMsupanet.com
Tue Oct 17 20:39:41 MDT 2000

----- Original Message -----
From: "Li'l Joe" <joeradical at yahoo.com>
To: "Black-Left" <black-left at egroups.com>
Cc: "BRC-Discuss" <brc-discuss at lists.tao.ca>
Sent: Wednesday, October 18, 2000 12:51 AM
Subject: [BLACK-LEFT] Gus Hall

> Gus Hall, A Personal Acknowledgement and
> Commemoration
> How does one measure greatness?  For me the
> measure of a man or woman in terms of
> "greatness" is by their commitment to humanity,
> and to the Truth as he or she understands it.
> This commitment to Humanity is the ability of
> he or she to transcend ethnicity and nationality,
> and from whatever the class background from
> which the individual emerged is able to make
> common cause with the most downtrodden and
> exploited of society, and the world. --"The
> philosophers have interpreted the world in
> various ways, the point is to change it!"
> Gus Hall, in my opinion was such a man.
> My personal feelings for Gus Hall, from when
> I was a child to those of a self-righteous
> young adult, to finally, recently in my "gray
> in gray", -- has run the gamut from fear and
> suspension to contempt and suspicion, to
> finally arrive at understanding and respect.
> Growing up in the poorest neighborhoods of
> the slums of Los Angeles and Compton, none
> the less I was socialized in the anti-communist
> and anti-Soviet culture of the  America of the
> 1950s, and so feared the Soviet Union, and
> thought that every American Communist was a
> Russian spy.
> I don't know how much this personally influenced
> me when as a teenager I became what at the time
> I thought to be a revolutionary Black nationalist,
> who are also anti-communist.  When I did come
> to read the works of the Communists -- Marx,
> Lenin, Stalin and Mao, at this stage I became
> a self-style "Maoist".
> As a "Maoist", I rejected the Communist Party
> of the Soviet Union as "Revisionist", and so
> rejected its American comrades of the Communist
> Party USA as "revisionist".  This was of course
> ridiculous since the comrades from the CP, and
> in particular the Che/Lamumba Club and Committee
> for Defense of the Bill of Rights, were the most
> disciplined and active members in the Black
> Liberation Movement in Los Angeles.
> CPUSA practice in both the anti-Vietnam
> War movement as well as in the Black Liberation
> Movement refuted Maoist unfounded accusations
> of "revisionism". The real problem, which was
> a problem and cannot be ignored, was the concept
> and politics of "popular front" as a strategy.
> Moving further to the left in search of a
> consistent revolutionary theory I came into
> contact with Trotskyism, which offered a more
> consistent analysis of the Soviet Union and
> Stalinism, including Maoism, which I assimilated.
> As when I was an anti-Communist kid in the projects,
> as well as a Maoist, so as a Trotskyist, though for
> very different reasons, I none the less in each
> case looked upon the Soviet Union and the CPUSA
> with fear, and then contempt, but always with
> suspicion.
> I was wrong to have done so.
> After having experienced first hand in the latter
> 1970s and the Reagan 1980s the full power of the
> bourgeois state in repressing the Black liberation
> movement, I began to understand what the Socialist
> Workers Party as well as the Communist Party USA
> went through in the 1950s.  I cannot but respect
> both parties  for their courage and determination.
> To Gus Hall and the generation that held the torch
> and passed it to my generation, even as we denounced
> you as "revisionist", and "Stalinist", I beg your
> forgiveness even as I recognize your contributions.
> This does not mean that I agree with all you have
> stood for, but that I recognize the legitimacy of
> the Communist Party in the working class movement,
> and that our differences ought to be fought out
> with the respect due to comrades fighting the
> same class enemy.
> Notwithstanding our differences with the Communist
> Party, Gus Hall's legacy ought to be respected.
> =====
> Li'l Joe
> __________________________________________________

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